Eclectica Contemporary2024-02-14T10:47:01+02:00
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ECLECTICA CONTEMPORARY

With an increasing focus on African Art around the world, Eclectica Contemporary aims to present a carefully selected and focused collection of art from the continent that interrogates issues facing us in a globalized world. The art at Eclectica Contemporary often showcases practices and materials from art history but which push these boundaries and explore uncharted territories of representation, technique and theory.

Based in Cape Town, South Africa, Eclectica Contemporary sees itself as an African gallery with an international vision. We celebrate the diversity and depth of art making on our continent while aiming to contextualize it for a growing global market.

Our program of exhibitions shows a mix of solo shows by gallery artists alongside curated group shows. In addition, the Eclectica Contemporary exhibition space has facilities for experimental, new media and project-based works.

EXHIBITIONS

Yasmine Yacoubi

Yasmine Yacoubi Yasmine Yacoubi is an artist with a rich and diverse background, having lived across four continents, which has deeply influenced her artistic journey. Growing up between Dresden and Casablanca, and later living in places like France, Australia, Chile, and presently South Africa, has expanded her sensitivity and connection to the world. Yacoubi’s artistic exploration began in 1997, and since then, she has continuously honed her skills and techniques, attending various international workshops, including the “Ecole National des Beaux-Arts” in Paris. Her paintings reflect her fascination with the vitality and forces of nature, which she sees, hears, and touches around her. Emotions are a central focus of Yacoubi’s work, and she draws inspiration from her daily life. Whether it’s the blossoming prune trees or any scene that deeply touches her, she translates these experiences into modern or abstract portrayals on canvas. Living in Cape Town provides Yacoubi with an extraordinary opportunity to explore the beauty and complexity of nature, which serves as the primary inspiration for her abstract works. Her paintings capture the continuous transformations of her surroundings, reflecting her diverse cultural background and her profound connection to the world around her. Through her art, Yasmine Yacoubi invites viewers to share in her journey of exploration and discovery. Download Catalogue Yasmine Yacoubi Silvermine 2023 Oil on canvas 80 x 70 cm Yasmine Yacoubi Sedgefield 2023 Mixed media on canvas 102 x 100 cm Yasmine Yacoubi Sedgefield III 2024 Acrylic on canvas 102 x 100 cm Yasmine Yacoubi Still Life II 2022 Oil on canvas 60 x 40 cm Yasmine Yacoubi Silvermine Pool 2023 Oil on canvas 60 x 50 cm

Greywacke

Greywacke Eclectica Contemporary is pleased to present Greywacke, a solo show by Jacobus Kloppers. The title Greywacke embodies the essence of this exhibition, drawing from the stone formation utilised by early Dutch and British colonisers in the construction of iconic architectural marvels. The dense, dark grey stone, adorned with white feldspar crystal lines and red ochre quartz layers, serves as both canvas and inspiration for the artworks. These structures, prominently featured in the exhibition, become the focal point, their historical significance intertwined with the materiality of the stone. Each piece is a tapestry of history, layering photographic imagery of Table Bay's landmarks – the old harbour, Robben Island, Salt River, the Amsterdam battery, the Castle, the Prestwich burial site, the Kings Blockhouse, and the Table Mountain Cable Car station. These images, captured through various mediums including laptops and cell phone screens, reflect the voyeuristic exploration of history. Through this juxtaposition, the works transcend mere representation, becoming intricate constructs that delve into the physicality of stone, the documentation of human endeavour, and the personal and societal interpretations of these revered sites. Greywacke is not merely an exhibition; it is a journey through time, where the past converges with the present to evoke contemplation and reflection on the layers of history etched in stone. Download Catalogue Jacobus Kloppers 945 2023 Oil on canvas 25 x 20 cm Jacbous Kloppers 4th Book 2022 Oil on canvas 25 x 20 cm Jacobus Kloppers Aspire I 2023 Oil on canvas 25 x 20 cm Jacobus Kloppers Blowin' in the wind 2023 Oil on canvas 25 x 20 cm Jacobus Kloppers Blowin' in the wind 2023 Oil on canvas 25 x 20 cm Jacobus Kloppers Blue Horizons 2023 Oil on canvas 60 x 45 cm Jacobus Kloppers Castling 933 2022 Oil on canvas 40 x 30 cm Jacobus Kloppers  Castling 935 2023 Oil on canvas 60 x 45 cm Jacobus Kloppers Castling: Baaken 2023 Oil on canvas 103 x 102 cm Jacobus Kloppers Embrasure 2023 Oil on canvas 60 x 40 cm Jacobus Kloppers Tower of Babel Eu2+ 2023 Oil on canvas 130 x 102 cm Jacobus Kloppers Face off 2023 Oil on canvas 40 x 30 cm Jacobus Kloppers HVT 2024 Oil on canvas 25 x 20 cm Jacobus Kloppers Island 2 2021 Oil on canvas 60 x 45 cm Jacobus Kloppers Island 6 2021 Oil on canvas 100 x 78 cm Jacobus Kloppers Laputa 2024 Oil on canvas 60 x 45 cm Jacobus Kloppers Refuse Dark Island Study 2021 Oil on canvas 25 x 20 cm Jacobus Kloppers Roof: Crust 2021 Oil on canvas 60 x 45 cm Jacobus Kloppers Ruins and Wake I 2020 Oil on canvas 25 x 20 cm Jacobus Kloppers Rust  2022 Oil

Passages

Passages Eclectica Contemporary is pleased to present Passages, the second iteration of our collaboration with Morgenster Wine Estate, showcasing works by Nina Holmes. The exhibition opens on Saturday, 11 May 2024 at Morgenster Wine Estate, Vergelegen Avenue, Off Lourensford Rd, Somerset West, Cape Town. The process of altering or intervening to create work is a significant quality of Nina Holmes’ practice, and she often includes pieces of material or repurposed upholstery. She likens this process-based approach to “surrealist automatism”, while also allowing for the inevitable influence of found images, photographs and the borrowing of techniques and inspirations from other paintings. Working loosely and around expectations, Holmes’ paintings are never limited to canvas and oil. Instead, they push the formal, rigid canon of painting. She enjoys working on multiple paintings at the same time, with work spread out across her studio in Woodstock. The working process is occasionally accompanied by a grand symphonic soundtrack and sometimes with silence. There is careful thinking and intense working through various influences and concepts. Holmes is a Cape Town-based artist who completed her Post Graduate Diploma (2017) with distinction at the Michaelis School of Fine Art. She has had two solo exhibitions with Eclectica Contemporary and was featured in the 2020 Investec Cape Town Art Fair solo section. Download Catalogue Nina Holmes Urban Drift 2024 Acrylic on canvas 86 x 62 cm Nina Holmes Makes me lie in pastures green 2024 Acrylic on canvas 86 x 62 cm Nina Holmes Foreboding 2024 Acrylic on canvas 86 x 62 cm Nina Holmes Finding Paths 2024 Mixed media on canvas 85 x 60 cm Nina Holmes Immersion 2022 Mixed media on canvas 103 x 103 cm Nina Holmes Crossing Over 2024 Oil on canvas 103 x 103 cm Nina Holmes Eve 2022 Acrylic on canvas 59 x 84 cm Nina Holmes  I See a New Moon Rising 2024 Mixed media on canvas 103 x 103 cm Nina Holmes Marikana 2019 Acrylic on board 32 x 36 cm Nina Holmes Immaterial 2020 Acrylic on canvas 88 x 173 cm

The Venice Biennale 2024: Foreigners Everywhere

When I visited Venice eighteen years ago it was overrun with migrants. The experience left a vivid and lasting impression. It also made the invitation to the 60th Venice Biennial all the more ironic, considering the theme "Foreigners Everywhere." Unsurprisingly, numerous pavilions delved into the ongoing impact of colonialism. As for my highlights? They are the Netherlands Pavilion – Ced’art Tamasala – which focused on the lives of plantation workers, typically erased by our fixation on consumerism, at the expense of hidden and exploited labour. Then there’s the Spanish Pavilion. Gamarra's research delves into over 150 Spanish heritage paintings and artefacts across public collections and museums, spanning from the Empire to the Enlightenment, revealing the absence of decolonial narratives and bias in the representation of colonizers and the oppressed within museum contexts. This interdisciplinary revisionist approach intertwines sociology, politics, art history, and biology reinterprets and connects historical consequences to overlooked contemporary issues. While the Egyptian Pavilion gives us Wael Shawky’s challenge to conventional historical narratives of the Arab world by employing puppets, actors, sculptures, and drawings that transport audiences into his meticulously crafted alternate realities. Commissioned for the Biennale Arte 2024, Shawky's "Drama 1882" explores Egypt's Urabi revolution against imperial rule (1879-1882). Led by Colonel Ahmed Urabi, the revolution sought to reclaim Egypt for its people. However, the film zooms in on the pivotal events of 1882, particularly a cafe altercation between an Egyptian and a Maltese man, which sparked deadly riots and led to the British bombardment of Alexandria. Through meticulous historical inquiry, Shawky questions whether the cafe incident was a spontaneous event or a pretext orchestrated by the British to justify their military intervention. Shot in a historic theatre in Alexandria, with elaborate sets and period costumes, Shawky's precise direction brings this tumultuous period to vivid life, prompting viewers to reevaluate the complexities of colonialism and resistance. This exhibit stood out as a personal favourite of mine. The artist's intriguing use of colour in depicting scenes was captivating. Despite portraying years of colonial abuse, the choice of soft, pale hues for the expansive mountains imbued the artwork with a sense of sensitivity. The deliberate slow movements emphasized the significance of each individual within the narrative. Surprisingly, the music and messages conveyed a rhythm that was not characterised by anger or aggression but rather lent a humanity to the Egyptian culture and its people. While consoling, it was nevertheless disheartening to witness that despite the passage of time, we continue to confront similar tragedies, still subject to the influence of global superpowers. While creating awareness is often cited as the first step towards change, it's clear that mere awareness isn't always enough. Change needs to be reinforced swiftly to avert the mass devastation we're experiencing today. This requires concerted efforts at various levels, including grassroots activism, policy reform, international cooperation, and holding those in power accountable for their actions. Additionally, fostering a collective sense of urgency and responsibility among individuals and communities can help drive momentum towards

Crying In The Club

Good Good Boy’s work is multidisciplinary and inspired by the experience and reflection of ‘self’ amidst the swirling influences of the internet, pop culture, social media, socio-politics and intra and interpersonal relationships. Good Good Boy gives this a go through swathes of wild colour and self-deprecating humour - creating works that are playfully chaotic yet vulnerable, naive and sensitive. My work sits at the intersection of ‘self’, pop culture, and socio- politics in a way that doesn’t claim to be overtly political but rather through my own personal lens and experiences.’m interested in using absurdity to explore themes that are sensitive to me, drawing a lot on nostalgia, especially adolescence when I was coming to terms with gender, sexuality, PTSD, and mental health - looking at the influence of pop culture and the media around me at the time and still today. I like to poke at gender norms and paint and reclaim things that aren't expected of queer and femme artists - often using fast cars as a motif. A lot of the subject matter I paint is inspired by what was unattainable or ‘other worldly’ to me growing up - fussy dogs, fancy flowers, boutique ornaments, luxurious cars and high heels - even the medium of oil paint which I choose to create with today. I like to challenge the exclusivity and elitism of traditional art-making practices...choosing to smear thick, excessive layers of oil paint and scratching intimate, personal and sometimes crude markings into my canvas. These scratchings, similar to those etched into many public spaces, are like sometimes secrets and sometimes little love notes to myself and the audience. They're also painterly archeological diggings that archive and diarise the present. Download Catalogue GOOD GOOD BOY, Crying in the club, 2024, Mixed media on canvas, Framed, 85 ×120 cm GOOD GOOD BOY, Airpop, 2024, Mixed media on canvas, Framed, 101 x 101cm GOOD GOOD BOY, Cars, 2024, Mixed media on canvas, Framed, 44 × 32cm GOOD GOOD BOY, Horse Power, 2024, Mixed media on canvas, Framed, 50 x 75cm GOOD GOOD BOY, Banana, 2024, Oil on canvas, Framed, 44 × 32cm GOOD GOOD BOY, Throbbing, 2024, Mixed media on canvas, Framed, 44 ×32cm GOOD GOOD BOY, Mom's Car, 2023, Mixed media on canvas, Framed, 76.2 ×101.6cm GOOD GOOD BOY, Still Life, 2024, Mixed media on canvas, Framed, 76.2 ×101.6cm

The Non-Art Crowd

The Non-Art Crowd by Ashraf Jamal African matters, in this case its art, is a fraught wager, given the burden of history, immoral expediency, fetishism, and a greater range of prejudicial and projected perceptions as to what Africa, a benighted continent, might mean for the world. Here, I must show my hand, and return to Steve Bantu Biko’s prophecy, that Africa would give the world its ‘human face’. Beyond power, geopolitical shifts, North/South conflicts, etc., it is this promise to which I hold fast. As Precious Adesina of Artnet News noted, a ‘wider appreciation for contemporary African art and art of the African diaspora has grown dramatically over the last decade’ Similarly, the ‘Elevation of the Everyday’, the normalcy of African self-representation, which confounded the on-going perception of Africa as a zone of damage and beggary – in extremis. Referring to El Anatsui’s magisterial show at the Tate Modern, Adesina spoke of a wider interest, amongst African artists, in the use of everyday items and depicting scenes of the everyday. Indeed, Arte Povera, the most important European art movement in the second half of the 20th century, had found its perfect mirror in Africa, a continent more inspired than any other in the innovative repurposing of Western-metropolitan waste. Pointing to the nexus of colonial and post-colonial exchange, Adesina reminded us of the politics of a new African abstraction, built on repurposed waste, and the complex history of bondage upon which the excesses of Capital are founded. In this regard, the new dawn in African art could be understood as a symptom of a radical revisionism, one in which the black body is no longer centre-stage, except as a body abstracted and deterritorialized, allowed to morph beyond its identitarian constraints. Not only do these emergent African artists resist co-optation, say by the ‘conventional, snooty art world’, they are operating excessively – in excess of the constrained shackles conventionally placed upon them. Does this mean that we are witnessing a new expressive freedom, one in which art is nudged from its pedestal, reintegrated into a more capacious design-world, a world in which value is radically relativized, in which new forces emerge? ‘In compelling artists to assimilate and integrate, we are in danger of killing the voice of a new generation’. For me, it is the last point that matters most – intricate complexity – for this, as I understand it, allows not only for a demystification of tradition, not least that of Black Portraiture, little more than a mannerism these days, a Stylization of Self, even a Redacted Self, in so as far Black Portraiture has now become saturated and null. I say this, notwithstanding the genius that remains within it, in the matter, say, of Amoako Boafo. Lets forge ahead, ‘against cultural colonialism’, against regressive integration. ‘Let us reshape the discourse surrounding African art. Why should we consistently feel like the outliers, akin to unicorns?’ indeed. Though, for my part, I cannot imagine a better rejoinder to conformity and subjection, than

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